During COP26, GLEIF announced a partnership with Amazon and OS-Climate to add LEI datasets to Amazon’s Sustainability Data Initiative (ASDI) Open Data catalog. The goal? To encourage broader and faster development of climate-related financial applications. GLEIF spoke to Ana Pinheiro Privette, Global Lead for ASDI, about how the partnership will help improve global sustainability data modeling, mapping and calculation, and the impact on assessing risks and opportunities in climate finance.
Can you briefly describe the aim of the ASDI and your role in it?
Data is central to addressing the climate crisis, but too much of the data needed is scattered in different sources, available in different formats, accessible through different tools, and requires varying levels of technical expertise to analyze. All of these factors pose a challenge when it comes to efficiently analyzing sustainability data and effectively extracting the knowledge from it that is needed for decision-making and policy action.
Why did ASDI partner with GLEIF and OS-Climate and what is ASDI’s role in this partnership?
This collaboration is a wonderful example of how ASDI can help complement the work of other key players in the climate change field. Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) data is critical to help companies assess the climate change-related risks of their investments. Having this type of information alongside other foundational datasets in the cloud, along with access to computational capacity, can help us streamline the risk assessment process.
As part of this collaboration, GLEIF retains full control and ownership of the data in the AWS cloud, but all costs associated with data storage and outflow are borne by the ASDI programme. GLEIF agrees to manage the data and also make it openly available to anyone. Groups such as OS-Climate, Allianz and BNP Paribas will then be able to access and use the LEI dataset in the AWS cloud more effectively to gain better insights into the transient and physical climate risks of their financial assets.
What is the benefit of having LEI records publicly available in the cloud via ASDI’s data catalog?
By storing climate-relevant datasets in the cloud, we accelerate innovation by minimizing the cost and time required to acquire and analyze these datasets, some of which are in the terabyte and petabyte range and not otherwise accessible to most people. The LEI data is coupled with petabytes of these basic datasets and can be more easily integrated into the analysis process. Other datasets available to users include climate projections, historical weather records, satellite observations and more.
ASDI is continually expanding its data catalog to meet the needs of the sustainability community. By hosting the LEI data on AWS and establishing a direct connection between the GLEIF servers and the AWS S3 bucket, we are able to provide LEI updates every eight hours, making this information available to everyone around the world in a timely manner.
How can verifiable identities improve global sustainability data and enhance the assessment of risks and opportunities of climate finance?
LEIs provide a link to important reference information that enables clear and unambiguous identification of the legal entities involved in transactions. Each LEI contains information on the ownership structure of a company and thus answers the questions “who is who” and “who owns whom”. This increases transparency in the global market and allows investors to more easily assess how responsible the various assets in a given portfolio are from a sustainability perspective. With increased access to this dataset, companies and institutions around the world can more easily make informed decisions about their investments.
How will the partnership accelerate research and innovation in sustainability and climate finance?
Removing barriers to accessing and using basic datasets will minimize the time and effort associated with analysis and accelerate the path from data to knowledge. Financial services company Allianz, for example, is using LEI data to predict the impact of climate change on its insurance business and to expand the company’s asset management portfolio to include greener and more sustainable projects and causes. BNP Paribas, another example, is using the data to develop an open-source business matching service that will greatly democratize the production of climate-related analysis.